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More than skin deep

Tackling the damage and discomfort caused by life-changing devices

Published: 5 July 2021

Billions of pounds are ploughed into treating problems created by life-supporting and essential devices every year. There’s a real juxtaposition between hospital devices supporting life but also causing chronic skin damage and scarring. It’s an issue that a multidisciplinary team from Health Sciences and Engineering is tackling, bringing benefits to both patients and purses.

Through addressing device design, materials and patient monitoring, the Skin Health Group is pioneering new methods that could change the lives of people living with the long-lasting effects of pressure ulcers and scarring.

The team from Health Sciences, comprising Professor Dan BaderProfessor Lisette Schoonhoven and Dr Peter Worsley, led the EPSRC-NIHR funded Medical Device and Vulnerable Skin Network from 2014 to 2019. This brought together academics, industry, and clinicians to address two key challenges: optimising medical device designs and creating intelligent monitoring to promote self-management.

We developed bespoke sensors that can tell us when a problem could occur. We use pressure mapping and intelligent algorithms to determine how often people move and how likely it is they will get a problem.

Dr Peter Worsley - Associate Professor within Health Sciences

Read the full story in Re:action, the University’s research and enterprise magazine.

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